Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Hilliard

Tyra Hilliard

Attorney, Tyra Hilliard, Esq.

Tyra Hilliard is an attorney, professor, and speaker. Her law practice focuses primarily on the relationship between hotels and meeting and event groups including group sales agreements, liability issues, intellectual property, and related issues. Before becoming an attorney, Ms. Hilliard held management roles in hotels, travel, meetings and events, and catering. It was this diverse base of experience that launched both her law and academic careers. A firm believer in walking a mile in someone else's shoes, Ms. Hilliard is able to understand and commiserate with clients and students alike because she's been there. Serving on the faculty of the College of Coastal Georgia, Ms. Hilliard teaches courses in business and hospitality, including Hospitality & Entertainment Law, Hospitality Crisis Management, and Event Management. The co-author of a book on Event Project Management, Ms. Hilliard is also published and widely quoted on legal and crisis management issues in academic and industry publications. She is a guest blogger for the Meeting Professionals International/Plan Your Meetings blog. She has an active social media life (@DrMs. Hilliard) where she posts articles and resources related to crisis management and law in hospitality, meetings, and events (and things about her son). Ms. Hilliard has been honored for professional achievement as an Educator by the Professional Convention Management Association and received national recognition for her contributions to best practices initiatives with the Convention Industry Council and Meeting Professionals International. She is one of only two people in the world to have earned a PhD in Hospitality and the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) designation as well as being a practicing attorney.

Please visit http://www.tyrahilliard.com for more information.

Ms. Hilliard can be contacted at 912-506-8708 or tyra.hilliard@gmail.com

Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.